Herb Walk in Bangli, Bali

Sunday, February 28, 2016



Hello everyone! I know I've been very quiet here these past few months, but not to make things worse. Let's start by sharing my wonderful experiences in Bangli with I Wayan Suartana from Herb Walk Bali (*hint* this is going to be such a long post). So before we begin, after such a great new year's eve celebration spent watching traditional dance in Ubud palace, we ended up having our late dinner in The Onion Collective and playing cards with a bunch of strangers til the clock hit midnight. 

The next morning we've been planning to spend our first day of the year slowly, by taking this herb walk tour in Bangli early in the morning. After having our juice fix, we got picked up by the friendly guide, Wayan and headed to the south . One part of Bali I never knew exist. 


The moment we met Wayan, I knew that he was the kind of guy who is very down to earth and are willing to share everything you'd like to know about his homeland. We chatted for a few hours during our ride to Bangli to later found out that after many years running his tourism business, me and my friend were actually his FIRST local guest. I was very surprised and saddened at that time, I started questioning WHY and WHAT is happening? 

You gotta be honest with me, what's crossing your mind when you hear the word "herb walk"? Because frankly speaking, most of my friends would say it belongs to the elder people. And speaking of Bali, most people would love to spend their time hanging out at the beach or sipping cocktails while watching the sun goes down.

I'm that kind of person who enjoy having a real experience around genuine people who treasure their own culture. So having Wayan and his family greeted our arrival at their home with a traditional red rice tea and some snacks really enlightened my morning. All the family members were mostly there, from Wayan's wife Kanik, mother, his lovely daughters Putu and Kadek, nieces, and their dog.

Before we started our herb walk, Wayan showed us a little workshop he manage near his home as a place to gather young kids and visitors to learn cooking Balinese food and to create some DIY things using reusable materials around Bangli. We started our mini adventures by walking around a hidden forest. Many stories were told by Wayan especially about how his family and other locals were blessed by being surrounded with many herbs that they can use to cook even better heal some disease using only natural sources around Bangli.

After an hour or so exploring Bangli, we headed back to Wayan's house to be greeted with such an amazing Balinese lunch served by Wayan's wife and mother. You just cannot resist the taste of real Balinese food cooked by Balinese people. It tastes different and just oh-s0-delicious!! The warm hospitality didn't stop there and became more interesting when Wayan's daughter and niece showed us a Balinese dance performance. With traditional Balinese tunes blasting from their mobile phone, they were dancing passionately and showing different face's expression following the melody. It was amazing!

About Herb Walk Bali as a Family Business
Although only for such a short time visit, Wayan share with us some valuable stories about his decision to followed his own passion in sharing REAL Balinese culture as a part of his core tourism business values. This is greatly achieved by the way his family treated guests, providing meals, and so many insights in only one day. Long before Herb Walk Bali, he was working in the city and felt that he belongs to his home in Bangli and decided to make a living out of his own way.

"It was pretty challenging at first, but I'm glad that I took that big step in starting my own business. And what's wonderful about it is having my wife and family support my decision."

What makes me smiling ear to ear was when I found out that the reason Wayan also started his Selera Cooking Class is as a way of involving his wife and mother to be a part of his family business. 

So, here are some photographs from the trip, I hope you enjoy them as much as I do!

I also put an additional information about how to reach Wayan and his wonderful family at the end of this post!




                           Red rice tea and Balinese snack served before we started our herb walk









                                 Our Balinese lunch served by Wayan's wife and mother







                                 The little workshop for Selera cooking class and DIY activities









Remembering it was our last day in Bali, we then bid farewell to the whole family.
I had the best time spending my first day of 2016 joining Wayan and get to know his wonderful little family in Bangli. My disappointment when I found out we were their firsts local guest turned into such a wonderful feeling being their first Indonesian guest in hoping I can inspire you who read this post, to spend your time visiting Wayan family in Bangli whenever you visit Bali especially Ubud.

I personally feel that this kind of experience deserves to be appreciated by more Indonesian people rather than international tourists. So you might want to forget all fancy Bali destinations and try to embrace the real part from the Island of Gods. Because, it has so much to offer!

More informations about Herb Walk Bali
Visit their website : here
Trip advisor reviews : here
Contact number 
I Wayan Suartana : +6287862198114

Cheers,
Sisca

4 comments:

  1. Great post, Sisca! I agree with you, we need to promote our tourism to fellow Indonesians so that sense of nationality isn't lost completely. I can't wait to go back to that island despite was being there just 3 weeks ago!

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    1. Hi Lia thank you for the kind words. And I couldn't agree more with you, it was such a shame for me at the beginning to know that I was their first Indonesian guest. How exciting to hear that you also visited bali a while ago. Hopefully people will be more aware of this fact. Enjoy the rest of your week!

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  2. Beautiful photos, wow. I've heard good things about staying with families abroad. Glad you had a great experience with them!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Farrah for your kind words! Yes it was indeed such a great experiences. Try to stay with a local when you travel :)

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